City of Fremont Smart City Action Plan

Client Need

Fremont is a large, diverse, and innovative city at the forefront of the Smart City movement. As an innovative city, Fremont was looking for ways to use data management, computing resources, and internet of things technology to provide operational efficiencies, enhance public safety, save money, modernize infrastructure, and create new revenue opportunities.

Our Approach

Fremont sought CivicMakers’ help to develop a Smart City strategy, which we achieved through cross-departmental staff engagement, strategic planning, and technical advising. We began by conducting stakeholder interviews with specific departments to understand the City’s existing infrastructure and communication technology and to explore the City’s potential priorities, goals and outcomes. From that background, we proposed an advisory committee model that would help to guide the Smart City strategy as it was developed and implemented. We then designed and facilitated a hands-on workshop with an interdisciplinary group of staff to identify a vision and values, detail current and future projects, determine priorities, and outline a governance structure for the advisory committee. We worked with technical advisors from Nutter Consulting and Fremont leadership to transform these staff inputs into a useful resource, the Smart City Action Plan, to help Fremont move toward becoming a leader in Smart City solutions.


  1. The Smart City Action Plan, a graphically-rich document that can be updated in real time as projects are vetted and implemented and an accompanying prioritization matrix provides a set of criteria and scoring system to prioritize projects for implementation.
  2. The establishment of a cross-departmental staff advisory committee (called the Smart City Action Team), including a governance structure, meeting agendas, and ongoing consulting on communications, engagement, and implementation.
  3. Institutionalization of City staff learning from other City staff through lectures and working groups.


  • Client: City of Fremont
  • Dates: May 2017 – ongoing
  • Services: Strategic planning, workshop facilitation, advisory committee management
  • Team: Lawrence Grodeska, Cristelle Blackford, Melanie Nutter (Nutter Consulting)


“Choosing Civicmakers to guide Fremont’s Smart City journey has proven to be a solid investment. Civicmakers not only has deep expertise in the technical underpinnings of Smart City Design, but they also understand the opportunity to further organizational development goals by emphasizing teamwork, and the cross-departmental nature of connected cities. They have helped us craft an interactive, visual, and sustainable plan, and provided long-term governance tools that will empower staff to carry the effort forward. This is a plan that won’t sit on a shelf.”

– Fred Diaz
City Manager, Fremont, CA